Written by Kushaan Agarwal, a grade 9 student.
Facebook is one of the largest social media platforms in the world. However, it has recently been in the news because brands are stopping advertising on its platform.
What does that mean?
A large part of Facebook’s revenue (the money that it makes) comes from ads on the platform. Thousands of companies put their best ads on this website since practically everyone owning a smartphone or computer is on Facebook and thus will be able to see the ads. Facebook’s co-founder, Mark Zuckerberg was the world’s third-richest person at just 36! But, this could change now. He is now the fourth richest. Why?
Recently, companies have been boycotting ads on Facebook – companies like Unilever, The Coca-Cola Company, Hershey’s, Starbucks, Honda, Ben & Jerry’s, Mozilla and Dashlane, to just name a few. Each day more and more companies are joining this list. Not only this, but companies are stopping ads on Facebook’s sister company Instagram, too. Some said that they will not advertise on Facebook till the end of July, some said till the end of the year and some even just a short period of time.
So, the big question is why are they doing so?
Ads on Facebook are the greatest way to attract people, so what made companies boycott ads on this platform? Well, we all have heard of the recent incidents like that of George Floyd and more, which resulted in large protest movements across the globe. There were many posts on Facebook about this and people posted some hate comments. US President Donald Trump too made some comments that were criticized as being racist.
However, Facebook did not remove these comments from its platform, even though there was an outcry against these posts. And this is not the first time Facebook has been accused of encouraging hate speech – it has happened before as well, where the platform had allowed comments from political leaders even though these were against particular communities.